Wednesday, December 30, 2009

9 Ultras in 2009! 27 Ultras to Date.

Receiving the prize for 1st Place in My Age Category - BC Ultra Running Trail Series.

Dirty Duo - 50km
My first Ultra event in 2009. It is 2 loops of a 25km course in North Vancouver. The trails were covered in snow and it was a cold day. This race is the first in the BC Ultra Running Trail Series.(BCUTS)This was my second time completing the 2 loop, 50km course.

Chuckanutt - 50km - Bellingham, Washington
This course is a loop with the first 10km on flat packed gravel. The middle 30km has lots of uphill, downhill and MUD. There is a classic climb in this event called "Chin Scrapper" which it is very appropriately named. This was my 3rd time completing this event.

Diez Vista - 50km
a beautiful 50km on rugged west coast trails. This is the 2nd race in the BCUTS. This event was my very first ultra and I have now completed it 3 times.

Elk Beaver - 50km - Victoria
This event is loops of a 10km course around a lake in Victoria. It requires mental toughness to keep looping. Andy, Neil and I have participated in this a few years now and we enjoy the journey over on the ferry, the dinner with Carlos and other participants. This is the 3rd race in the BCUTS.

American River - 50 miles - Sacramento, California
This was a great weekend! Neil and I enjoyed our 3 days in the Sacramento area. The race follows the American River. The first part is a marathon on a paved bike trail. The second half is a marathon in the hills. It was the first event I have done where we were warned of poison oak and rattlesnakes. Beautiful weather - not too hot.

Scorched Sole - 50km - Kelowna
Andy, Neil and I made the road trip here the afternoon before the event. It was a beautiful warm evening in the Okanagan Valley. We found the best outdoor patio over looking Okanagan Lake for dinner. Andy did the 50 mile event and was winning up until the last few minutes until he took a wrong turn - ouch! Neil and I also found ourselves confused about the 50km route. It is the 4th race in the BCUTS.

West Highland Way - 95miles - Scotland.
This 95 mile race starts in the train station in Milngavie and follows the West Highland Way path to Fort William. It was my longest ultra to date, Neil has completed Western States and Tahoe Rim 100milers and H2H 100km - 5 times. We decided to do it together. His experience and calm nature really helped get me through as well as the crew of Charles, Graeme and Fiona. I did well except for the pain in my feet. Dario had warned me about this - a common complaint from those of us across the pond who run on softer surfaces. It was a fantastic event and we look forward to returning again this year. Shortly after the event Dario, the RD passed away. It was tragic news. He was the nicest, kindest person and he took a real interest in helping me complete the WHW. Without his help I may not have had the courage to start. Well we have signed up again!

STORMY - 50 mile - Squamish, BC.
This is a favourite event of mine! I have completed the 50 mile event 3 times now.
Wendy, the RD offers an early start which I prefer to take to relieve any time pressures throughout the day. There is a 100 mile event taking place at the same time so that adds a bit of excitement and I constantly tell myself to suck it up as I am only doing 1 loop of the 50km event when I come across the 100 mile runners. Another BCUTS race.

Walk in the Park - 54km - Kamloops, BC.
This is the second time I have completed this event. It is 3 loops of a very hilly course on sandy dry trails. The RD - Chris does a fantastic job of keeping this event to a nice number of people where we all know each other and he cooks you up a "hot dog" when you are done! This year Ian joined Neil and I for the middle of the night drive to Kamloops and returning home by 8pm. It's a full day but a fun one! Another BCUTS event.

Bagger Challenge
No Ultra distances here but worth a mention for a highlight of 2009. I bagged 16 Peaks over 3,000 feet in Sept/October.

Oh and I must mention under taking the Masters of Science Degree at Simon Fraser University - and trying to find the balance with work, play and school. Looking forward to another year of great challenges and lots of fun accomplishing them - even the upcoming Statistics Class ;-)



  1. Amazing year Carolyn!!
    Great reads!!

  2. Thanks Marla,

    It was a great year! Looking forward tp 2010!
    All the best for you and Chad in 2010.



  3. Congratulations on your 9 ultras in 2009. An impressive achievement.

    I hope 2010 goes just as well if not better!